South African mobile operator MTN has reversed its 200MB limit for BlackBerry Internet Service (BIS) and sent SMS notifications to its users informing them of the restoration of their unlimited package. “This means that with MTN’s BlackBerry Absolute service, customers receive free uncapped data access until their next top-up anniversary date,” Ryan Gould, general manager for brand and communications for MTN, HumanIPO reported in February MTN decided to cap BlackBerry Internet Service (BIS) as a means of alleviating pressure placed on the operator’s network by over-active BlackBerry users. SEE MORE AFTER CUT>>>>>>>
“The BlackBerry Absolute plan is aimed at optimising the network to make it efficient so as to provide a world-class experience for our customers,” said Devan Chetty, general manager for core and internet protocol planning for MTN South Africa, at the time.
MTN said the changing of the policy was largely due to customer demand. “MTN has listened to its customers and have brought back what customers were asking for,” said Gould.
MTN had experienced negative publicity shortly after their decision to cap BIS because Vodacom and Cell C, its largest competitors in South Africa, kept their BIS packages for older BlackBerry smartphones. Shameel Joosub, CEO of Vodacom, said data is one of the fastest growing sectors in the mobile industry.“If you look at the way data’s been growing – traffic is up 40 per cent, and your pricing is down 18 per cent with the result that we’ve had a very food growth of 16 per cent in data. Yes, it’s possible [to increase data revenue], as long as the traffic continues to increase,” said Joosub.